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SOMXS maintains unique mission

Senior Airman Marcellus Garner removes sealant while preparing a C-146A Wolfhound engine cowling

Senior Airman Marcellus Garner, 919th Special Operations Maintenance Squadron structural journeyman, removes sealant while preparing a C-146A Wolfhound engine cowling for a cracked angle replacement at Duke Field, Fla. 919th SOMXS Citizen Air Commandos support Air Force Special Operations Command. (Air Force photo/Tech. Sgt. Jonathan McCallum)

Senior Airman Spencer Prescott, 919th Special Operations Maintenance Squadron structural journeyman, works on a sheet metal project

Senior Airman Spencer Prescott, 919th Special Operations Maintenance Squadron structural journeyman, works on a sheet metal project at Duke Field, Fla. These Citizen Air Commandos are responsible for maintaining the C-146A Wolfhound. (Air Force photo/Tech. Sgt. Jonathan McCallum)

Pictured is a hand fabricated Air Force Special Operations Command Patch.

Pictured is a hand fabricated Air Force Special Operations Command Patch. This was made by the Citizen Air Commandos of the 919th Special Operations Maintenance Squadron at Duke Field, Fla. (Air Force photo/Tech. Sgt. Kenneth McCann)

DUKE FIELD, Fla. -- Day and night, Air Force Reserve Citizen Airmen maintain aircraft needed to perform missions critical to national security. 919th Special Operations Maintenance Squadron Citizen Air Commandos perform this mission, but in a way that is unique in the Air Force Reserve.

These Reserve Airmen provide maintenance support for the C-146A Wolfhound at Duke Field, Fla. The aircraft is critical to the Air Force Special Operations Command missions around the world.

“We get to do exciting stuff with AFSOC,” said Master Sgt. Jeffery Rush, 919th SOMXS Aircraft Structural Maintenance Supervisor. “It’s very specific non-standard aviation.”

The aircraft is distinctive because of AFSOC’s unique mission, and the knowledge of the airframe is not taught in Air Force technical schools.

“We get to come in and do stuff that is different than the normal reserve unit mission,” said Rush. “It’s unique being a part of AFSOC.”
Currently the 919th SOMXS is working with contractors who are guiding them in fully taking on the job of maintaining the Wolfhound aircraft early next year.

“It’s a challenge because we are limited to what we are allowed to do so we are not conflicting with anything that is on their contract.” said Tech. Sgt. David Hamilton, 919th SOMXS Aircraft Fuel Systems Technician. “We are charged with putting the process in place before we take over in January.”

These maintainers are also bringing innovation to the work site.
“I am buying equipment that is more efficient and reduces employee exposure to hazardous materials,” said Rush.

These Citizen Air Commandos have developed a good sense of teamwork since taking on this mission.

“It’s a tight knit family,” said Hamilton. “There’s a lot of camaraderie at this duty station that other duty stations don’t have.”

The 919 SOMXS team is also comprised of the aerospace ground equipment, munitions, and accessories flights. Together, their hard work and unity has helped make the 919th SOMXS an effective team of maintainers.

“We have devoted our time, sweat, and our blood to make this a successful unit,” said Rush.